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NUMERO 23 - 02/12/2009

 Berlin, small steps change history

The opening of the big mayor border between the two sides of Germany at the time, the German Federal Republic (GFR) and the German Democratic Republic (GDR), not only meant a massive popular reunification, but a lot more. One the more immediate side, it meant the end of the division of the country into two sides, which transposed to a bigger scale, represented the reconciliation of the two big blocs that divided Europe and the world at the time: West vs. East, Democracy vs. Soviet System. In the long run and in a different area, it helped rush the realization of the project for an economic and politic integration: the European Union. 
The fall of the wall and the reconciliation were not the beginning of the way but rather the end of a long process which had been floating in the air for several years. The Soviet system had started to undergo a slow an almost unnoticed journey that was undermining the validity of the good old hardcore communism created by Stalin. Georges Mink referred to this process as “desoviétisation” in his book Vie et mort du bloc soviétique (XX Siècle). The term “desoviétisation” does not mean the collapse of the system but instead the changing process, created within the system, that obliged Soviet communism to adapt to this changes to survive, which in fact and in a way unexpectedly, led to the collapse of the system in 1991.

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